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Musical Theatre in the 1980s: The Mega-Musical

AMV2O - Monday, March 21, 2011
by

Charlie Henderson

on 20 March 2013

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Transcript of Musical Theatre in the 1980s: The Mega-Musical

Musical Theatre in the 1980s: The Mega-Musical AMV20 - Monday, March 21, 2011 What's going on in film in the 1970s? Blockbuster: a very popular and/or successful film. As time passes, movie budgets become larger and larger.

Average film budget by year:
1955 - less than $1 million
1965 - 1.5 million
1978 - 5 million
1980 - 11 million
1982 - 18 million
1998 - 53 million For the first time in history, people could watch movies in the comfort of their own homes. How does this affect theatre? Widespread availability and low cost make movies an important part of popular culture.

Theatre gradually loses some influence in popular culture.

Producers want to create shows that will guarantee lots of sales. THE MEGA-MUSICAL IS BORN. Two important elements for a mega-musical:

1. Longer runs
2. Bigger budgets Rodgers and Hart in 1937-1938: Babes in Arms
Opened April 1937
Open 8 months
289 performances I'd Rather Be Right
Opened November 1937
Open 8 months
290 performances I Married An Angel
Opened May 1938
Open 9 months
338 performances Runs of mega-musicals:

Phantom of the Opera - Open 25 years - 10,400 performances*
Cats - Open 21 years - 7485 performances
Les Miserables - Open 16 years - 6680 performances
Miss Saigon - Open 10 years - 4097 performances

*still open VHS BETAMAX
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